tv Larry King Live CNN April 16, 2010 12:00am-1:00am EDT
therefore, the prince thiple th week is that every child can go to school. >> that's it for "360." "larry king live" starts right now. see you tomorrow night. -- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com >> larry: tonight, ann coulter and aisha tyler are here butting heads over sarah palin, president obama and the tea party rally. we'll take you there during the hour. plus, gloria estefan, why are some calling the cuban-born american superstar a traitor? we go live to her home where the obamas are her guest of honor this evening. then, buzz aldrin on air force 1 with the president today. the future of the space program has a few heroes up in arms. what's buzz's take on that? and "dancing with the stars."
next on "larry king live." good evening. i'm sitting in for larry tonight. larry's son chance is pitching at an important little league game. he's back tomorrow night with willie nelson. with us tonight ann coulter. her most recent text is "guilty, liberal victims and their assault on america." also aisha tyler, comedian and political moderate. tea party rallies are under way all across the country, especially in new york and washington. we are looking live now at what's going on. we will get reaction now from our guest starting with ann. that was a bit hyperbolic. the two of you ripping into each other. >> now it's on. >> i apologize. that said and this tea party
movement, has it had any real impact thus far beyond us talking about it on radio and tv? >> well, there has been a lot of chit-chat about it. i think so. there are a limited number of test cases yet but it did well in new jersey, in virginia, then in massachusetts. of course the november elections coming this fall. i think it's funny after the poll on the new york times. they surveyed tea partiers and it turned out they are more highly educated and a little wealthier than the american populous at large. so it will go from them being hillbillies to republican fat cats, but i think they are regular americans. >> is it your feeling it's been based on classism? >> no. it's liberals who don't want to deal with the argument. but on the polls taken -- and i
have spoken at two tea parties, one in connecticut and one in las vegas. the polls taken of the tea partiers because they have been viciously attacked by the media. for one thing it's hard to describe the typical tea partiers. it's broad and a genuine grassroots movement. about 20% of them voted for obama. about 5% black, 10% hispanic and, as the new york times poll shows today, a little more highly educated and a little wealthier than the average american. >> ann's right, but they are not just more educated, more affluent, they don't look like you, like me. when you see the tea party rallies, what do you see? what are you looking at? >> i think it's interesting. the other side of 5% black and 10% hispanic is the rest are caucasian. there was a poll that said it's about 10% of the american public that identified themselves as tea partiers and a smaller subset are active tea partiers. they are conservative. i don't think this is a new
group of people. this is a subset of the republican party. we were talking about is this making a difference? i think the problem for everyone is when you look at the groups of people it feels like a movement, but it is not a new group that's going to sway momentum one way or the other. it's a subset of the republican party, generally pretty conservative. what's coloring how we perceive them is maybe 90% are thoughtful, reasonable and kind of -- you know, i think there are arguments made about how we could fix and change the tax system. but the ones you hear are the ones that spit, use epithets, throw things, call the president -- o you think there is a liberal that shows up and uses the n-word or the f-word? >> mm-hmm. >> i know a lot of liberals and we generally sit home and listen to npr. just because you deny that those elements are in the tea party doesn't make them go away. they're there. >> it begs the question, ann, what are the white men so angry about? the numbers are clear.
many americans, two million, in fact, are being -- are struggling with the economy, but the numbers are clear. black folk, brown folk, poor people are getting crushed by the economy. what are these white men so angry about? >> that's a good question. >> you're right. the numbers of blacks are hurt larger than whites. >> so why the anger? >> well, i would like to address your characterization of the tea partiers as just white men. okay, it's true, 85% are caucasian, but this is the first time i have heard black people complain about this. you can't say everything that's majority white is by definition racist. what about the philadelphia machinists? >> i don't think it's a complaint. it's an observation. >> from steve cohen, white liberal representative -- >> it's like the kkk. >> they're not criticizing their
own party movement. when you look at what's happening with that group of people, the republican party is trying to sub sume that group. they want to own it. palin and bachmann says they're merging. i don't know about that. >> 15 seconds each. who benefits most from the tea party angst -- republicans or democrats -- in november? >> definitely republicans. that's why they are being described as racists. >> it's a mid-term election and democrats will lose seats but moderates are turned off by the rhetoric at the tea party speeches. it feels negative, not positive. it's not here's what we're going to do. here's what's wrong. it's not a positive way to approach politics. >> don't go anywhere. just what is gangster government?
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repeal the bill! we're going to repeal it. >> representative michele bachmann is a republican from minnesota. you just saw her speaking about an hour ago. she's been a speaker at several spots on the tea party express including today's rally in the nation's capital. representative, good to have you on. let me start by asking how you define the term that you use often -- gangster government. what does that mean? >> well, it means the federal government taking away from people what rightfully belongs to them. i think one of the best examples was when the president's automobile task force gave out 3,400 pink slips to people who owned car dealerships all across the united states. overnight, people lost their assets because they lost their dealerships. they were stuck with service parts, cars on their lots and they lost their income overnight. why? because our government decided they were going out of business with essentially less than 30 days' notice. this is really a radical change from doing business.
we have never done business before like this in this country and it's hurting american jobs and american prosperity. >> sarah palin is speaking at some of the rallies you have been speaking at. she's said that the president's policies are moving us in a direction that is un-american. do you agree with that? >> well, i think the policies that we are looking at are the real issue right now. it's what is happening to our country? if you want to look at the last 18 months, the story in our country has been the federal government takeover of private industry. the federal government literally in 18 months' time has taken either direct ownership or control of 51% of the private economy. 18 months ago, 100% of the private economy was private. today, the federal government literally owns banks, the largest insurance company in the united states. the federal government owns over
half of all home mortgages today in the united states. chrysler, gm, the student loan industry and now health care. you add all that up and it's 51% of the private economy, for the first time in the history of our nation. the federal government owns or controls 51% of the economy. that's not what we have been in the past. we are a free market economy. this is completely the antithesis of that. >> i think people are disappointed that the taxpayer dollars have been used to do things to bail out people that got themselves into a mess they were in and many americans are waiting for their bailout. all attention being put on wall street and not enough attention on main street. that's not a white argument, a tea party argument. i think a lot of americans who feel that way. the question is what do we learn from the fact that the new york times/cbs news poll suggest that so many in the tea party movement think that the president himself is un-american and that the president himself has policies that favor blacks
more than whites. that's what the numbers indicate. how are we supposed to read that? >> well, what i'm hearing in washington, d.c. -- and there are probably 25,000 or 30,000 people behind me now. what they are fed up with is out-of-control spending, deficits that we have never seen the likes of before in the history of the country and people are taxed enough already. in the midst of that, tavis, the president's administration is calling for a value-added tax which is a national sales tax. when you go to the dollar value drive-through, it would be $1.25. or if you buy a bar of soap at a dollar it will be $1.25. the government has hidden the tax in the cost of producing the item. people are taxed enough already. they don't want any more taxes. [ cheers ] >> you said earlier today you want your supporters, the tea party movement followers to send
the little piggies -- your quote, not mine -- send the little piggies home in november. what are you asking them to do, right quick? >> i'm asking them to put constitutional conservatives in charge of the house and the senate and then two years from now, give us a constitutional conservative president so that in february of 2013 we can repeal obamacare. i'm the first member of congress to go down to the house floor to file a bill to repeal obamacare. people can go to michele bachmann.com and sign my petition to repeal this very bad bill in february of 2013. >> good to have you on. thanks for your time. name-calling and nastiness, is it necessary? ann and aisha back to talk about the political climate in america and respond to what the congresswoman said in a moment. you're watching "larry king live." stay with us.
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we're back on "larry king live" talking to aisha tyler and ann coulter. we just heard from michele bachmann and while she didn't engage thankfully in name-calling and that's not her style, per se, but the names. president obama has been called a socialist, a traitor, un-american, compared to stalin, hitler with the mustache. the climate, what do you make of it? >> i want to talk about two things. first, i think there is a war of
perception that's been going on where conservatives have tried to paint him in a light. i don't want to call people gullible. i don't think it's fair, but they have been seduced by the concept. i have had an argument with fans who say, i'm sorry, but hitler was an ultra right wing conservative. >> no, no. >> yes, he was. he was incredibly right wing, a fascist. the philosophy was fascism. >> he was anti-religious and big government. >> specifically fascism is a right wing philosophiment. >> no, no. >> the general perceptions, americans have the second lowest income tax burden in the history of our modern tax structure. it is the second lowest in the history of the country. we are creating a perception that people are overtaxed but 98% of american tax burden went down this year. there have been 1,500 tax cuts put in place under obama. cuts and credits.
the conservatives and tea party movement has been effective in framing things in a way that make people feel robbed. >> when the wall street journal today starts to suggest that there are sign that is the economy is starting to recover, if the economy does, in fact, start to recover, what's the tea party movement going to be mad about? >> for one thing, taxes didn't go up much because the bush tax cuts haven't been repealed yet. we're worried about next year, paying for the health care bill. i want to get back to name-calling. i'm not just making this up or making a joke when i say those are liberals with the name-calling. the one sign with obama as hitler where we know who was holding it and you don't know who's showing up, it was a liberal there. there have been two acts of violence at tea parties or town
halls and this may explain why we don't have more blacks at the tea party, a black conservative was beaten up so badly by union thugs he had to be hospitalized. another was in california -- >> hold up, ann. you're not going to convince me or any reasonable person watching the program that when members of congress are being spat on as they walk in the building, being called nigger walking in, there were liberals and other black folk doing that? >> i'm glad you bring that up. i have been reading about the freedom rides and he's a real american hero. in the first new york times article on this, i noticed that he himself did not claim that. it was an aid or a cameraman or something. >> you see him spit on. >> no, you don't. >> there is footage. >> oh, no. there's spittle when someone's shouting -- >> he spits in his face, he reacts and the guy spits again. >> there are photo cameras all over people walking out. >> i saw the footage. >> if you see someone saying the n-word you win $100,000 to produce the tape. there is no tape. >> i have seen the spitting footage. it's legion. we have seen many, many versions.
>> you're talking about someone yelling with spittle coming out of the mouth. not walking up and spit -- >> let me take a break. when we come back, i want to continue. >> i'm spitting on the whole table, in fact. >> i'm glad i'm on this side. when we come back, i want to continue on this line. i hear the point you're making. i'm not sure i agree. but i don't think you're suggesting that we are not living in an age of incivility. you're watching "larry king live." we'll be right back in a moment. stay with us. oh sure, we have plenty of employees that...
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so ann, incivility. you're not going to tell us we are living in an age of increasing incivility where we are not appreciating the humanity of each other in our political discourse? >> no. but i have been arguing that since my second book "slander." i think it comes more from the left. i have been linking periodically to this website, i think called zee -- zebratime and they have pictures of george bush with "assassins wanted" chopping off his head in effigy. we have emerged from eight years of some of the most vicious homicide-laden political rhetoric in a country of 300
million there will be some nuts. >> is it the answer to repudiate it if you're right -- >> of course. i'm saying -- >> but to repudiate it? >> you have engaged in it many, many times in your own discourse with others where you have called them names and engaged in what you call jokes later which other people may claim were racist or dismissivement. >> i have never been accused of that one. but it's coming. >> the camel joke. >> that was anti-muslim. anti-gay and anti-muslim. oddly enough, i assume it's coming. ultimately. >> this is a badge of honor for you? >> i don't think i am any of those things. maybe anti-muslim because i'm angry about 9/11. my point is exactly what you are saying that this is how liberals respond to me by calling me names. i'm not here to complain about
it, but i think it's incivil the way the new york times and some people on this new york are portraying tea partiers who, by and large, are honorable americans and we haven't gotten proof of any actual -- >> ann, i'm not here to defend the network cnn, but cnn didn't do this poll that finds that these tea party members -- >> what poll? >> the new york times/cbs news poll that suggests that the tea party movement thinks that -- >> obama favors blacks. black people make too much of their problems, that they need to stop whining. these came out of a poll. not conducted by cnn. >> i don't want to debate that. >> i would like to. >> respond quickly. >> i don't know what the percentages are. there was a new york times poll and one a month ago that i consider more honorable. but after what happened with professor gates at harvard and obama using a press conference
to attack the white cop, there is some reason for people -- >> wait a minute. no. he just responded to a question. he didn't hold a press conference to attack a white cop. someone brought it up. >> i'm not saying i agree with that. but it's not out of left field here. >> ann, neither is it out of left field -- >> what percentage? >> 60. >> it is also not out of left field when sarah palin puts up that target sign on certain districts on her website that people are concerned about which raises this question for me -- sarah palin, is she uncivil in her discourse? beyond that, why do you think we are so fascinated with sarah palin? >> that's a great question. the poll i'm referring to from a month ago shows 20% of the tea partiers voted for obama. they don't like the big government policies. i want to cite that poll as long as you have your poll. and sarah palin and the target thing.
that sounds like the sort of princess and the pea whining i hear from a different cable network of oh, oh, we are so upset. >> come on, ann. >> no, no. kill the bill? liberals act like it's assassination rhetoric. what was her name? joan benatar? hit me with your best shot. >> i would not dispute liberals who brought vigorous polymecism and metaphor to the debate when the bush administration was in office, but nobody fired at the white house. nobody fired at legislators' offices. no one showed up at rallies with guns. there is a violent tinge to what's happening now that's demonstrative, aggressive, bald. when you have people showing up at tea parties wearing a hollister. >> those are some of the black tea partiers. >> i'm not saying they don't exist, but the tea party movement, race-free, there is an
undercurrent of violence happening now. the threats. after the health bill passed, i know where you live, the guy calling pelosi on the phone. >> but it's been committed by liberals. >> what violence? >> there was a black conservative beaten to a pulp at a st. louis tea party. >> i think the point -- we've got to -- ann, we have to break. >> he punched that guy in the mouth and he bit him back. >> i think the point is that we have to be intellectually honest in this discourse. we have to be honest and we have to repudiate this nonsense where we find it. we'll leave it there for a moment. gloria estefan is hosting a party for the obamas tonight. why does that have her in trouble? you think ann's in trouble. gloria's in trouble now. we talk to her live in a moment. stay with us on "larry king live."
award-winning superstar and proud american. she's hosting a fund-raiser for the obamas and that has her in hot water with the conservative members of the community. you and your husband have been known for years for your activism on this particular issue in miami and beyond, but you have not been known to be partisan. so why this event tonight for the democrats and for the obamas? >> well, thank you very much for having me. tell me why i'm in trouble? i didn't know that part. i heard you say that. we're still nonpartisan. i am not affiliated. the bottom line is if the white house says we're going to miami and we'd love to do it in your house, what more of an honor than a cuban-american immigrant than to have the president of the united states in my home and
speak to him about the things we have been doing. we had a march for the ladies in white in support of what they are going through in cuba, getting beat up for walking peacefully in the last seven years. they walk, ask for the freedom of their political prisoners injustly incarcerated. this year they were beat up, thrown on a bus. to have the president of the united states here after he issued a strong statement on march 24, i think it was. it was an honor to have president obama here. i support him. i think -- you know, he's in a tough position. i think anybody that took over this country at the moment that he did is going to go through a lot. i think, you know, we're coming back, little by little. >> did you get a chance or will you have a chance to speak to the president about this issue of u.s./cuba relations and what have you or what will you say on that matter to the president? >> i did very much. we already had the event. we had it in two parts. a small group of people met with
him first on one side of the house. and then after he greeted them, i was able to show pictures of the march that we had pictures of the ladies in white in cuba getting violently beaten by the police and thrown into a bus. i gave him a letter from a martyr of recent times. his name is orlando sapato de mayo who died on a hunger strike and was beaten. 18 days without water. he died. another one, guillermo familez is about to die. he's asking for prisoners of conscious who are dying because they are so sick. he's been on a hunger strike for 85 days. i talked to him about that. give him letters from the mother of the dead dis-sident.
he was standing by me as was everyone here at the party. it was a wonderful night. >> let me ask you right quick, you mentioned earlier that it was an honor for you to have the president in your home. trust me, it was an honor for the democrats as well and the republicans to be in your home given what you and your husband represent and given that you have not been partisan heretofor. the republican party seems to think in the past that the cuban-american public has been in their camp. with a new generation coming, is that starting to change a bit, do you think, in terms of political affiliation? >> well, the president was voted in here in dade county in a very hispanic and cuban-american community. that should give you that answer. we continue to be nonpartisan. we go for who we think is the best candidate. there were republicans and democrats here today. the beauty of this country is that we have that discussion. although i've got to tell you, i think you guys are turning cuba with very passionate discussions
that i have been watching lately on american television. and the politics always lights people's fires. politics and religion do that. but the beauty of this country is that you have that discourse in freedom and without consequence. i think we always have to stand up for that, although i would hope that we learn more civility. i think the fact that the internet and things like that makes us more anonymous is firing people to let go and go at it. we can still hear each others' opinions without having to resort to that. >> i know you have had a full night tonight. we appreciate it. >> thank you so much for having me on. >> thank you. quick response from aisha and ann. i think the question is there's been a lot of talk that the obama coalition is fraying, that what he had to win in 2008 he doesn't have. look at massachusetts, virginia, they say. look at maybe his own state of illinois, they say. what about this move by the president to get to miami, get
to florida to try to shore up a base or reach out to a new base as it were? >> it's probably a good idea. from what you say the reaction to gloria estefan is, doesn't sound like it's going to work but i would venture to say gloria estefan will be treated better by conservatives though she's hosting obama than michael steele or the poor conservative black tea partier who got beat up will be treated by liberals. >> the fact of the matter is any coalition frays when you get into the muck of trying to run a country. he has equivalent numbers to reagan at this point. he is a conservative. you know, the man is floating somewhere with a halo in conservative minds. the president is in the same place with numbers. people love him personally. i think we are seeing two terms from this guy if it doesn't fall apart. >> thank you, ann coulter and aisha tyler. buzz aldrin is here next. he was on air force 1 with the president. stay with us.
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years, but pull the plug on a project to send u.s. astronauts back to the moon. here's some of what he had to say earlier today. >> the bottom line is nobody is more committed to manned space flight, to human exploration of space than i am. but we've got to do it in a smart way -- [ applause ] >> and we can't just keep on doing the same old things we have been doing and thinking that somehow is going to get us to where we want to go. >> a number of former astronauts have opposed the president's plan but not buzz aldrin. he piloted, of course, the apollo xi lunar module in 1969 and was the second man to step on the moon. good to have you here, sir. >> thank you very much. i'm sorry larry isn't here, but i enjoy talking to you. nice to be with you again. >> that makes two of us. sorry larry's not here.
he's back tomorrow, i promise you. let me start by asking about the ride on air force 1 with the president. how was the ride? tell me why you and other astronauts are not -- people like jim lovell -- why are you supporting the president in this move, this change in direction for nasa? >> well, i support it because primarily we are re-evaluating the course that we were on that i do not think was leading successfully to an exhibition of american greatness. i don't think we really needed to go back to the moon again. even though at the time it looked like a quick trip there on the way to somewhere else might be more enthusing for the american public. we have been staying in earth orbit for quite a while, but the manner in which it was implemented right from the
beginning trying to build a small rocket on one solid rocket for the crew and a large rocket for the cargo, we didn't need to divide it up into two different kinds of rockets. one medium size would have been fine, very much like what's been launching the shuttle. we sure ran into trouble -- >> so what do we gain from this new direction that president obama wants to take the space program in? what's the end game here? >> well, we can have a two-phase program that leads toward permanence on mars without the distraction and large expense of sending our astronauts back to the moon again. by the time we could get there with any reasonable spending, it
would be pretty close to 2030 and i'm sure the chinese and indians and others would be there by that time in a competitive race. i think it's much better for us to take our experience and an international lunar development corporation where we have a majority position and help out the other nations. we put a large amount of money into that space station and i'm glad that we have extended it another five years so we can test out the equipment that we need for long duration flight which we don't have right now and weren't going to get from the constellation program. we need to reorient the orion craft so it's an orbit to orbit spacecraft that is reuseable and gives us a specialized transportation for mars back to the united states -- back to the earth orbit where a spacecraft from the earth, a commercial spacecraft from the earth will be up there and rendezvous with
them and bring them back, land them in a runway. >> i've got to -- >> i hope that's the kind of -- >> i hate to cut you off, buzz. when we come back, i'll let you complete the thought. i want to ask whether or not you think space exploration is a priority for americans all these many years later. how do you have buzz aldrin here without talking about "dancing with the stars" and what happened backstage. we'll do that next here on "larry king live." stay with us. ♪ ♪ [ male announcer ] every business day, bank of america lends nearly $3 billion dollars
presidential order prohibiting discrimination. gay and lesbian partners have new rights on that. we talk to a woman whose partner plus the big 360 interview. jack kevorkian, a fascinating discussion about his decision to help people end their lives if they choose. now back to tafvis smiley. >> i mentioned before the break, buzz, i wanted to ask whether or not you think space exploration is in these days still a priority for americans. president kennedy, of course, talked about going to the moon. president obama reminiscent of that kennedy speech talked today about mars. are americans still looking at space exploration as something that we ought to be doing as a
priority of sorts? >> well, i certainly hope they are. every sense i get is there was great enthusiasm hearing the president speak today and i think it's a question of working these details out in the next several months and i would expect to see an even further commitment once we get the details worked out as to exactly what kind of launch vehicles we are going to be having. in the meantime, of course, we have expendable rockets that are commercial that can take a spacecraft that's been defined for some while and studies by nasa and can run back on the runway. i'm strongly in favor of that. i think it stands a very good chance of being the preferred way of bringing people back, both from the space station and both from exploration missions. that was not possible with the previous program.
we just didn't have enough money to do that. so, i think the reallocation as the president said, is going to result in reaching a heavy lift vehicle sooner than we would with the president -- previous president's plan where we were going to build two different launch vehicles, which would have been competing with the private sector. i think the commercial people are fully capable. they have done this in the past in aviation and i'm certain they will be able to do that with the space flight. >> buzz, let me ask you, before i lose you, did you enjoy your "dancing with the stars" time? i was just reading about your iphone app.
you are one hip brother. >> yes. i have an iphone app here that's called buzz aldrin portal to space for science and space exploration. can't quite get it to do what it's supposed to be doing. >> hey, buzz. you hold that thought. while you figure out how to work the iphone app, i'll come back to you. april is national child abuse prevention month. cnn hero is on this experience. a trucker turned lawyer at age 48. she's helping battered women and children in rural vermont. take a look chlgt. >> when i was grog up on a back road, family violence was an accepted way of life.
my father raped me and beat my mother and my other siblings. when the neighbors heard screaming coming from our home, they turned their heads. for domestic violence victims in rural areas, it can be very devastating. they are out there with no access to in town services i'm wyonona ward. a child in my family revealed she was abused by my father and brother. i said it has to stop. when i graduated from law school, i was 48 years old. i go to people's homes, give them in-home consultation and provide them legal service. i can understand them and they know that i will be there to protect them.
>> ward has helped nearly 10,000 victims and drives nearly 30,000 miles a year to do it. visit cnn.com/heroes. more with buzz aldrin and his iphone app after this. stay where you are. ♪ 20 minutes later, she'll bring one into the world in seattle. later today, she'll help an accident victim in kansas. how can one nurse be in all these places? through the nurses she taught in this place. johnson & johnson knows, behind every nurse who touches a life... there's a nurse educator... who first touched them. ♪ you're a nurse ♪ you make a difference one month, five years after you do retire?
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oh, sure. >> did you smoke pot today? >> yeah. >> before you came here? >> yeah. >> can't wait to see that tomorrow night. larry king tomorrow night back in this chair with willie nelson. tonight, a few more minutes with buzz aldrin. we learned about your iphone app. how cool was it to be on "dancing with the stars," buzz? >> i think it was an honor to be selected to represent those people and because of the contributions of the apollo program in the past. i think it reminded people of the great successes of apollo and got them in a timely way to think about the transition that we have from the constellation program to go to the moon to a program that i think holds
greater promise for the american people and for leadership. we can help other nations go to the moon. we can bring china and other nations into the space station and this is my application and if you can see this, this is the buzz aldrin portal for science and space applications and it's got quite a few different categories that you can learn all you would like to learn about space, people that i bring together and round table discussions, nasa watch, nasa tv, space reference and we'll be having lots of different discussions and op-ed people. >> buzz, i got -- >> okay. >> you are one busy guy with your iphone app and "dancing with the stars."